Yoki: Streetwear label making new and cool of old discarded materials

Yoki Shop sells streetwear with a difference. Designer Jeff “Yoki” Yokoyama takes materials that are being discarded in the market – such as Levi jeans, USC or UCLA football uniforms and military jackets – and turns them in to one-of-a-kind statement, streetwear classics.

The motto for the Yokishop is: “Design different. Make different. Sell different”. Designer Jeff Yokoyama uses his clothing line to show how cool repurposing can be – making new and cool out of old.

The designs, by streetwear and surfwear pioneer and former Stussy designer, are simple and stylish pieces, blending the Yoki laid-back style with discarded materials that Jeff Yokoyama personally hand picks from markets.

Think basics like tees, hoodies, baseball caps and bomber jackets made from a mixture of repurposed materials as well as new items, like tees, made locally in California. As well as menswear and womenswear, there’s even an, albeit small, line of kids wear and a baby onesie.

Yoki make all their own patterns, cut each garment by hand one at a time, and do all the sewing at the Yoki shop in Newport Beach, California. Yoki aims to provide jobs and create a smaller carbon footprint.

Take two stand out pieces from the Yoki collection – the vintage Polo, Ralph Lauren corduroy bomber jacket which has been redesigned with camouflage front panels and Yoki shop patches, and the Upside Down Levi’s Pocket Fleece Crew, a simple dark grey marl sweatshirt with an upside down Levi’s jeans pocket – Jeff Yokoyama and his small team have taken materials that would otherwise end up in landfill and created something iconic, classic and sustainable.

One of Yoki’s most popular items is the hoodie sweatshirt, made from beach towels. The one-of-a-kind sweatshirt has become so iconic among the Orange County community, where the Yoki store is based, that people now deliver their old towels straight to the store to have it customised and made into a sweatshirt.

Jeff Yokohama says that repurposing and re-styling is the future of fashion. “The feeling is this hand-done thing,” Jeff Yokoyama said in an interview with Tide Push Creative. “It’s a personal type of styling. It’s not like anyone else’s. It’s yours. That’s what’s important in this market at this day and age. The younger kids, if I could pass this feeling onto them, if they can grab the baton and run with it, that’s what I want to happen.”

Yoki Shop

Rosalind Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She is a writer who specialises in sustainable lifestyle and living, wellbeing, music and arts. Rosalind also works as a psychic, counsellor, intuitive reader and spiritual life coach helping people to become who they truly are and manifest their heart & soul’s desires into their lives: www.rosalindmedea.com

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